The U.S. has surpassed Italy as the country with the highest number of coronavirus deaths with nearly 22,000 recorded by early Monday, according to NBC News figures.
Worldwide, the death toll is more than 113,000, and the number of confirmed cases has surpassed 1.8 million, according to Johns Hopkins University.
In the U.K., Prime Minister Boris Johnson was released from St. Thomas' Hospital in London and returned home Sunday, a promising sign for the Conservative leader's recovery.
To mark Easter, Pope Francis gave his annual address on Sunday to an empty basilica, calling for solidarity and prayer during these difficult times as holiday traditions have been upended in the pandemic.
In pop culture, coronavirus survivor Tom Hanks made a surprise appearance on "Saturday Night Live," giving the opening monologue for the show's remote episode from his kitchen. SNL's current and former cast members also memorialized SNL music producer Hal Willner, who died of complications from the virus.
As unemployment continued to soar in the U.S., Former Vice President Joe Biden released a plan to reopen the American economy in a New York Times op-ed.
Mainland China reported 99 new coronavirus infections, more than doubling from the previous day to reach a one-month high, as the number of single-day imported cases hit a record, official data released Sunday showed. Almost all the new infections — the biggest daily count since March 6 — involve travelers from overseas. Just two out of the 99 cases were locally transmitted.
In addition, highlighting another major source of risk, newly reported asymptomatic coronavirus cases nearly doubled to 63, up from 34 the previous day, according to China's National Health Commission.
- Here's what to know about the coronavirus, plus a timeline of the most critical moments.
- MAPS: Confirmed cases in the U.S. and worldwide, confirmed deaths in the U.S. and globally.
- Stay-at-home orders across the country: What each state is doing — or not — amid widespread coronavirus lockdowns.
Download the NBC News app for latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak.
This live coverage has ended. Continue reading April 13 coronavirus news here.
Smithfield closes South Dakota pork plant
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Virginia-based Smithfield Foods announced Sunday it is closing its pork processing plant in Sioux Falls until further notice after hundreds of employees tested positive for the coronavirus — a step the head of the company warned could hurt the nation's meat supply.
The announcement came a day after South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem and Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken wrote to Smithfield and urged the company to suspend operations for 14 days so that its workers could self-isolate and the plant could be disinfected.
The plant, which employs about 3,700 people in the state's largest city, has become a hot spot for infections. Health officials said Sunday that 293 of the 730 people who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 in South Dakota work at the plant.
Antibody testing study begins in California
LOS ANGELES — As Los Angles County reaches over 9,000 reported COVID-19 cases and nearly 300 deaths, a huge unknown remains here and across the nation: How bad is it?
With a population of 10 million, larger than those of more than 40 states, the county is a prime location to launch a large-scale study that aims to answer that question and learn more about antibodies that could potentially provide immunity from COVID-19, the disease associated with the coronavirus, according to public health and policy experts.
More than 6,000 New Yorkers now dead from COVID-19
More than 6,000 residents of New York City have lost their lives from complications brought on by COVID-19, health officials said Sunday night.
There have been at least 6,182 confirmed coronavirus fatalities as of 5 p.m., according to the city's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's daily tally.
The increase of 440, from the same time on Saturday, follows spikes of more than 500 in four of the previous five reporting periods.
Britain at its best in a crisis, Prince William says
LONDON - Prince William says Britain is at its best in a crisis, his office said Sunday, the latest in a series of messages from the royal family seeking to galvanize the nation during the coronavirus pandemic.
Queen Elizabeth has twice addressed Britons in the past week, while heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles, who tested positive for the new virus, has also issued several video and audio messages since he recovered.
William's message came on a day when the COVID-19 death toll in hospitals across the United Kingdom passed 10,000.
"I think Britain is at its best when faced with a crisis," the queen's grandson said during a call with a community charity in northern England that runs a food bank and has been delivering hot meals to isolated people. "We all pull together and that community spirit comes rushing back quicker than anything else."
Photo: An Easter bunny visit in Washington, D.C.
Vietnamese-owned nail salons donate thousands of masks, gloves to hospitals
When Huy Nguyen closed his nail salon in Mobile, Alabama, two weeks ago in response to the coronavirus pandemic, he donated all of the protective equipment in his inventory — a few hundred masks and eight boxes of gloves.
Nguyen, an owner of Top Nails 2, wasn’t alone. Prompted by a Facebook request from a local Vietnamese pharmacist, dozens of other Vietnamese salon owners in Mobile came together and contributed more than 134,000 gloves and 23,000 masks to a nearby hospital. Nguyen later called friends who own salons in other cities and encouraged them to do the same.
“Fighting this virus is a responsibility for every one of us,” he told NBC Asian America. “We don't work in the medical field, so we cannot fight the virus directly but we want to share our responsibility and share what we have with the community.”
As health care professionals report shortages of personal protective equipment, Vietnamese-owned nail salons across the country, which dominate the multibillion-dollar nail industry in the U.S., are donating protective masks and gloves — requisite sanitation items in every salon — to hospitals in their communities.
Baseball is back for the people — and cats — of Taiwan to enjoy
The world's first competitive, professional baseball game to be played after the start of the pandemic was held in Taiwan on Sunday, to the joy of countless fans and cats on the self-governing island.
Taiwan has received worldwide praise for its handling of COVID-19 outbreak. Tsai urged citizens to watch baseball and promised that "when the epidemic is over, we'll meet at the stadium."
British comedian Tim Brooke-Taylor dies of coronavirus at 79
LONDON — Tim Brooke-Taylor, famed British comedian and performer, died Sunday morning from COVID-19, the disease associated with coronavirus. He was 79.
Brooke-Taylor was part of Cambridge University’s Footlights revue, the breeding ground of several generations of British comic talent. He broke into radio and television comedy in the 1960s alongside future Monty Python members John Cleese and Graham Chapman.
Brooke-Taylor went on to form The Goodies with Graeme Garden and Bill Oddie. The trio specialized in slightly surreal sketches incorporating visual inventiveness, slapstick and songs. Their song “Funky Gibbon” even became a U.K. top 10 chart hit in 1975.
Trans woman fined for breaking Panama’s gender-based lockdown
A transgender woman in Panama was fined $50 for breaking the country’s gender-based coronavirus lockdown, according to a report from Human Rights Watch. On April 1, Bárbara Delgado was stopped and detained by police who alleged she was male and out on the wrong day.
The country’s gender-based lockdown, put in place by Panama’s Ministry of Health, permits women to do essential shopping on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. In contrast, men are allowed out for their essential shopping on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. No citizens are allowed outside of their homes on Sundays.
Delgado was stopped on a Wednesday, on her way to volunteer at a medical center near her home. Three others, two men and a woman, were also stopped for breaking quarantine rules but were released with a warning.
However, Delgado was detained for three hours inside a police station and made to pay a fine because the male gender marker on her identification did not match her appearance, according to Human Rights Watch. In Panama, sex reassignment surgery is required to change a person’s legal gender on official documents.
Panamanian human rights and LGBT organizations have called on the government to consider gender perspectives when making decisions about quarantine measures during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Easter messages in the age of Coronavirus, from the Pope to MI6
Governors say they still don't have enough equipment to handle the coronavirus outbreak
Governors on the frontlines of coronavirus outbreaks said Sunday they still have an insufficient amount of supplies needed to combat COVID-19, though they said the situation has improved in recent weeks.
"We're fighting to stay ahead on bed capacity, ventilators that are constantly running thin, the medicine you need for those ventilators, the personal protective equipment, and the relief from the bullpen for our health care workers," New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, a Democrat, told CNN. "So, we are every minute of every day on all of those fronts doing everything we can to stay out ahead of it."
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, told ABC that while "everybody has gotten more supplies than we had the week before and the day before.... I’d hate to say that everybody’s completely happy and that we have everything we need."
"I mean everybody still has tremendous needs on personal protective equipment and ventilators and all of these things that you keep hearing about," he added. "Everybody’s fighting to find these things all over the nation and all over the world."
New York death toll tops 9,000 as 758 more deaths are reported on Easter Sunday
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo spoke to reporters on Easter Sunday to give an update on the state's coronavirus repsonse.
- The death toll is now 9,385, after another 758 deaths were reported.
- The governor added that although cases have not greatly declined, the number has begun to flatten.
- On the confusion over school closures, Cuomo said he respected New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's opinion on keeping schools closed for the rest of the academic year, but that the governor needs to coordinate plans with regional leaders.
- "The position of ‘I think schools should be closed,’ that’s not an unreasonable position," Cuomo said. "He doesn’t have to worry about Nassau, Suffolk. He doesn't have to worry about New Jersey, and Connecticut. But I do."
- There have been some anecdotal reports of patients who are positively reacting to hydroxychloroquine treatment, but Cuomo said he has yet to receive a full report on the trials.
- When asked what he would do if he contracted coronavirus, Cuomo said, "My plan is to do this from home."
Photo: Virtual worship in Seattle
Biden releases coronavirus plan
Former Vice President Joe Biden detailed his plan to reopen the U.S. economy on Sunday, writing in a New York Times op-ed that the country will first need to significantly decrease the number of new cases, provide widespread testing and ensure that the healthcare system is prepared for flare-ups later in the year.
Biden said social distancing "has to continue and the people on the front lines have to get the supplies and equipment they need."
"Make no mistake: An effective plan to beat the virus is the ultimate answer to how we get our economy back on track," Biden said. So we should stop thinking of the health and economic responses as separate. They are not. Once we have taken these steps, we can begin to reopen more businesses and put more people back to work. Things will not go back to 'normal' right away. As public health experts have said, we should expect activity to return gradually, with sites like offices and stores reopening before arenas and theaters."
Live from their bedrooms, it's 'SNL'!
"Saturday Night Live" returned from a planned break that turned into a monthlong coronavirus hiatus and made the most of its cast members and host Tom Hanks, who sent in a series of fast-moving videos from self-isolation at home.
The show did not open with its usual refrain, "Live from New York, it's Saturday Night!" But Kate McKinnon did say, "Live from Zoom." And an announcer said, "It's Saturday Night Live at home."
The usual opening credits of cast members on the town in Manhattan were nixed in favor of footage of them at home, in kitchens, with children and even in bed.
Tom Hanks emerged as a surprise host of the evening. He said, "It’s good to be here. But it's also very weird to be here hosting 'Saturday Night Live' from home."
Fauci: Earlier social distancing measures 'obviously' would have saved more lives
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious diseases expert, said Sunday that earlier efforts to stop the spread of coronavirus in the U.S. "obviously" could have saved lives but top health officials faced "a lot of pushback about shutting things down."
Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was responding on CNN's "State of the Union" to a New York Times report stating that President Donald Trump's top public health officials concluded by the third week of February that they should recommend to the president a new approach to COVID-19, which included social distancing steps.
But, according to The Times, the White House "focused instead on messaging and crucial additional weeks went by before their views were reluctantly accepted by the president — time when the virus spread largely unimpeded."
"We look at it from a pure health standpoint," Fauci told CNN. "We make a recommendation. Often, the recommendation is taken. Sometimes, it's not. But ... it is what it is. We are where we are right now."
Treasury official: Tens of millions to receive coronavirus payments this week
Tens of millions of Americans will get their coronavirus stimulus payments by this Wednesday, April 15, via direct deposit, a senior Treasury Department official told NBC News.
And a website is coming by next week where you can check the status of your coronavirus payment – and update your direct deposit information if needed.
The first payments started hitting bank accounts on Friday night, the official says, several days ahead of schedule. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin had said Wednesday they would start going out “next week.” The official says more payments are being direct deposited into people’s bank accounts throughout the weekend.
Andrea Bocelli to stream special live concert at Duomo di Milano
Italian music icon Andrea Bocelli will give an audience-free solo performance representing a message of “love, healing and hope to Italy and the world” on Easter Sunday at the Duomo cathedral of Milan, amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
The #MusicForHope performance will be streamed at 7 p.m. local time (1 p.m. ET).
Outbreak could 'decimate' Latino wealth, which was hammered by the Great Recession
Octavia Nieto worked for over 10 years as a pastry chef at a bakery in Princeton, New Jersey. Now with the business closed indefinitely, she relies on a part-time job with a cleaning company.
“I’m making about $170 a week. What can I do with that? Not much. The other day I went to the store to get some essential things and it was like $30,” Nieto said, adding she only has enough savings for two months.
“When I think about what the future will bring us, I don’t even know what that looks like,” Nieto said.
The economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic is dealing a hard-hitting blow to Latinos who barely recovered from the hammering they took in the Great Recession, raising the possibility of a setback from which many may not recover.
Despite encouraging signs, Coronavirus is 'advancing' worldwide, WHO envoy warns
WASHINGTON — A top envoy to the World Health Organization warned Sunday that the coronavirus will be a “virus that stalks the human race for quite a long time” until a vaccine is developed.
In an exclusive interview with "Meet the Press," Dr. David Nabarro, a special envoy to the WHO, noted there are signs that the rate of new infections could be beginning to slow in the United States and Europe thanks in part to “very rapid” mitigation.
U.K.'s Boris Johnson leaves hospital where he was treated for COVID-19
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson left the London hospital where he was being treated for COVID-19, and returned home on Sunday, Downing Street confirmed.
A spokesperson said he would continue his recovery at Chequers, the prime minister's country residence in the county of Buckinghamshire, to the north of London.
“On the advice of his medical team, the PM will not be immediately returning to work," they said, adding that he wanted to thank everybody at London's St. Thomas Hospital where he was treated for the brilliant care he has received."
Johnson, 55, was admitted to London’s St. Thomas' Hospital on April 5 after "persistent" COVID-19 symptoms.
Banish 'self-centredness' Pope Francis says in lonely Easter Sunday address
Pope Francis called for global solidarity on Easter in fighting the pandemic and its economic fallout, urging the relaxation of international sanctions, debt relief for poor nations and ceasefires in all conflicts.
The pope's Easter Sunday "Urbi et Orbi" (to the city and the world) message was delivered from an empty St. Peter's Basilica instead of to the usual crowd of tens of thousands in the square outside. The Mass was live-streamed for those who could not attend in person.
Saying the message of this year's "Easter of solitude" should be a "contagion of hope," the pope praised doctors, nurses and others risking their lives to save others and hailed those working to keep essential services running.
"This is not a time for indifference, because the whole world is suffering and needs to be united in facing the pandemic," he said. "Indifference, self-centeredness, division and forgetfulness are not words we want to hear at this time. We want to ban these words forever!"
Saudi Arabia extends curfew indefinitely
Saudi Arabia’s King Salman extended a nationwide curfew until further notice due to the spread of the virus, the interior ministry said on Sunday, after the kingdom reported more than 300 new infections on each of the last four days.
Last month Saudi Arabia imposed a nationwide curfew, and last week, it placed its capital Riyadh and other big cities under a 24-hour lockdown to stem the spread.
The country of some 30 million has recorded 4,033 infections with 52 deaths, the highest among the six Gulf Arab states. The kingdom has also halted international flights, suspended the year-round umrah pilgrimage, and closed most public places. Other Gulf states have taken similar precautions.
Libyans caught between bullets, bombs and now COVID-19, Red Cross warns
Hundreds of thousands of Libyans are caught in an intensifying conflict as COVID-19 threatens to spread and debilitate the country’s fragile health system, the International Committee of the Red Cross said in a press briefing on Sunday.
The humanitarian institution fears that the virus will compound the suffering of conflict-affected families who are already struggling to meet basic needs like shelter, food, water, and medical care. Despite international calls for a ceasefire, the civil war in the country's capital of Tripoli has recently escalated forcing people to flee their homes and damaging civilian infrastructure.
“The Libyan health care system was struggling before COVID-19,” Willem de Jonge, ICRC’s head of operations for Libya, said in the statement. “Today, some medical professionals who need to be trained on COVID-19 infection prevention protocols keep being called back to the frontlines to treat the injured."
Clinics and hospitals are overwhelmed caring for war-wounded and those with chronic illnesses, so their capacity to receive COVID-19 patients is limited, he said. Libya reported its first death from the disease earlier in the month.
North Korea to implement stricter anti-epidemic measures: state media
Stricter and more thorough countermeasures to ensure the safety of North Korean citizens from the fast spreading pandemic will be implemented after a meeting presided over by leader Kim Jong Un state media reported on Sunday.
The Korean Central News Agency said the virus had created obstacles to work on the economy, but the North had enforced consistent and compulsory "strict top-class emergency anti-epidemic measures" to maintain a stable situation.
On Saturday, in a meeting of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea, a joint resolution was adopted to take “more thorough state measures for protecting life and safety of its people from the great worldwide epidemic disease,” KCNA said.
While the country has more than 500 people in quarantine, North Korean officials have claimed the country has no confirmed coronavirus cases.
Queen says 'light and life' are greater than death in first Easter message
Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II insisted that "coronavirus will not overcome us," in her first ever Easter address to the nation.
In her second message to the U.K. in a week recorded on Saturday, she said that while celebrations would be different for many this year, "We need Easter as much as ever."
Referencing the tradition of lighting candles to mark the Christian holy day, the royal added: "As dark as death can be — particularly for those suffering with grief — light and life are greater." The queen is the symbolic head of the Church of England.
The 93-year-old monarch’s message came as Britain’s death toll neared 10,000 on Sunday.
WHO investigating reports of recovered patients testing positive again
The World Health Organization said Saturday that it was looking into reports of some COVID-19 patients testing positive again after initially testing negative for the disease while being considered for discharge.
South Korean officials on Friday reported 91 patients thought cleared of the virus had tested positive again.
The told Reuters in a brief statement: “We are aware of these reports of individuals who have tested negative for COVID-19 using PCR (polymerase chain reaction) testing and then after some days testing positive again.
“We are closely liaising with our clinical experts and working hard to get more information on those individual cases. It is important to make sure that when samples are collected for testing on suspected patients, procedures are followed properly,” it said.
Kansas Supreme Court backs limiting church gatherings
The Kansas Supreme Court on Saturday night backed Gov. Laura Kelly's executive order limiting church gatherings to less than 10 people. The order stands.
The state Supreme Court said the council did not have the power to overturn an executive order of this nature. Kelly had said social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic was a matter of "real-life consequences."
New cases double to 99 in China as imported infections jump
Mainland China reported 99 new coronavirus infections on April 11, more than doubling from the previous day to reach a one-month high, as the number of single-day imported cases hit a record, official data released Sunday showed.
In addition, highlighting another major source of risk, newly reported asymptomatic coronavirus cases nearly doubled to 63 on April 11, from 34 the previous day, according to China's National Health Commission.
Almost all the new infections - the biggest daily count since March 6 - involve travelers from overseas. Just two out of the 99 cases were locally transmitted.
High-speed Cannonball Run made amid traffic void
Amid stay-at-home orders across the U.S., some car enthusiasts have taken to the highways to try to beat the record for fastest drive from New York City to Los Angeles.
One anonymous trio in a low-key Audi sedan was successful April 4, setting a new record of 26 hours, 38 minutes, said former record holder Ed Bolian. The coast-to-coast record attempts pay homage to the circa-1970s Cannonball Baker Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash,
Another former transcontinental record holder, Alex Roy, says that, because coronavirus can be spread by asymptomatic carriers, driving across the nation during a pandemic could expose the enthusiasts and others along the route, he said.